A solid bantamweight fight between Yoshiro Maeda (23-5-2) and Rani Yahya (12-4) was announced by the WEC today for its at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Fla., on September 10.
We all remember Maeda from his three round war against division kingpin Miguel Torres at WEC 34 in June. Unfortunately for the Japanese fighter, he wasn't able to answer the bell for the fourth round because of a doctor's stoppage.
But he was able to open a lot of eyes with the way he went toe-to-toe with the champ, who is widely considered to be a top 10 pound-for-pound fighter in the world. It's a step up in competition for anyone when they face Torres, and Maeda was ready for the challenge.
However, he can't expect a huge drop off in talent when he faces Rani Yahya. Obviously, the 23-year-old Brazilian has a long way to go in his development as a complete mixed martial artist, but the kid is a submission whiz, boasting 10 wins by way of tapout.
Yahya has won one and lost one while fighting in the WEC. His win was a a first round submission (rear naked choke) over Mark Hominick (16-8) at WEC 28 in June of last year. His loss was a unanimous decision to former champion Chase Beebe (11-3) at WEC 30 last September.
The 135 pounders are always exciting to watch. The WEC has done a nice job introducing them to the main stage of the mixed martial arts world. This fight is a very nice addition to an already promising show.
WEC 36 features a main event featherweight title fight between champion, Urijah Faber and challenger Mike Brown. The highly anticipated rematch between middleweight champion Paulo Filho and Chael Sonnen is also set for this card. Throw in two other high profile fights (Jens Pulver vs. Leonard Garcia and Rob McCullough vs. Donald Cerrone) and the WEC has another can't miss event set for mid September.
To check out the most recent WEC 36 fight card, which was today all but confirmed, click here.